New door knob

20 Sep 2014
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United Kingdom
I am planning on fitting new door knobs onto new internal doors. The ones I have chosen do not come with mortice tubular latches included. In terms of which size (length) to buy is it just personal preference of which to buy or is there something I am missing?
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If they are knobs and not handles, I would get the longest you can get. That way, when the door is closed, the knobs are away from the frame making them easier to operate. I retro fitted some knobs a while ago onto short latches and you could hardly fit your hand round them because they were too close to the frame!
That's great advice, thanks. Thinking of the practicalities, will it be better to install on the cross section of the door between the panels (four panel doors) as I imagine the wood will be too thin around the panel section (if that makes sense). I am replacing doors and had intended to use the same hole for the catch, but the height of these current handles is slightly above this middle section so if I get long tubular latches they may impose on the panels at this height. I guess it would be easier to move the site of the latch instead?
Yeah, know what you mean. It's best to fit them on the cross section where depth is not an issue but if you don't want to move the latch plate on the frame, just measure what you have to play with and get the longest one you can without imposing on the panels. Just remember, you need enough space to get your hand round the knob and turn to operate. If you do move the latch plate, a good bit of filling and sanding can repair the frame.
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Thanks again. I have gone for the option of moving the latch plate, seems the one I am less likely to cock up. Just wish I had planned this far ahead before sanding/stripping, filling and painting the frames again!
For knobs you will need 127mm tubular latches. Anything shorter WILL be too short. Most walk-in stores do not stock long latches, so you may have to buy online. Only buy double-sprung / heavy duty latches; single spring types will soon go weak and sickly, and you will hate yourself for scrimping.

Always fit the knob in the centre of the cross section (called the lock rail). This is the correct height for the knob/handle, and allows any depth of latch to be used. The existing mortice in your door frame can easily be filled.
Many modern fitters have got into the habit of putting handles (they never use knobs) a little way up the style, which sounds like what your doors had before. This is very amateur, as it ruins the symmetry and of the door and places the handle uncomfortably high (especially for the elderly and infirm). The lock rail is there for a reason.
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Thanks. I have bought heavy spring latches so ok on that front.
That would fit with the 'builder' that renovated our house before we bought it.
I have installed all new pine doors today, any experience/advice in terms of staining/varnish/waxing them?
I stained one side of my doors with Littlefair water based dye, to match my faux mahogany staircase, then waxed. I didn't have the balls to try varnish as I was too afraid of making a sticky mess full of dust and brush marks! Wax is much more forgiving.
The other side I wanted to look like stripped old pine, so I first stained it with a weak walnut crystal solution, followed by 'Antique Pine' Briwax. Briwax is amazing (needs to be mixed wth elbow grease though), they came out beautiful.

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